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HHS HealthBeat (January 14, 2011)

Fish oil and Alzheimer’s

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From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Could fish oil slow the development of Alzheimer’s disease? There has been hope, based on indications that people who ate one fatty acid in fish oil – DHA – had a lower risk of Alzheimer’s. But a closer look in a more rigorous study does not offer hope from DHA for people who already have Alzheimer’s.

Researchers at 51 centers examined data on more than 400 people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. At Oregon Health and Science University, researcher Joseph Quinn:

``We were not able to confirm any benefit of this particular omega-3 fatty acid for people who have Alzheimer’s disease.’’ (8 seconds)

The study in the Journal of the American Medical Association was supported by the National Institutes of Health.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: May 7, 2011